Ukraine's Parliamentary System after the Elections
The dominant force in Ukraine's Verkhovna Rada, elected in March 2002, are the deputies of "One Ukraine", a fraction of the pro-presidential centre. "One Ukraine" has refused to admit any of the opposition's representatives (either from the right or left wings) into the parliament's presidium, but has accepted opposition-appointed heads of many parliamentary commissions. Viktor Yuschenko's "Our Ukraine", which has been the largest parliamentary fraction since June, attempted to proclaim itself the centre of the parliamentary majority, but its policy was awkward and inconsistent, and the main success of this club was that it didn't break up. Viktor Yuschenko's moves have been particularly incoherent and they undermined the image of Yuschenko as Ukraine's future leader, created throughout the course of the electoral campaign.
In autumn, the main oligarchic groups and their representative fractions ("One Ukraine", which proved to be a useless instrument, was dissolved in June), reached a compromise with the president. It was agreed that the new prime minister should be a Donetsk clan representative (Viktor Yanukovych), and that the Dnipropetrovsk clan should appoint the president of the National Bank of Ukraine (this position went to Serhij Tihipko). The Kyiv clan obtained the President's Administration (Viktor Medvedchuk was appointed in spring) and a considerable number of parliamentary commissions. The president's interests in the government are to be protected by Mykola Azarov, former Head of the State Tax Administration. This compromise "package" was designed to secure the shares of the main oligarchic clans in the power and the president's strong position as mediator.